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Christian Philosopher: Voting Third Party is ‘Dereliction of Duty’

William Lane Craig: ‘Character without right policy is just as empty as faith without works.’

One of the world’s foremost Christian philosophers, theologians and apologists said that it is a dereliction of duty for a Christian to vote for a Third Party candidate in the US Presidential Election. William Lane Craig, a professor at BIOLA and Houston Baptist University, said there are important moral issues at stake in the US election.

“I am inclined to think that anyone who votes for a third-party candidate who has no realistic chance of winning is guilty of a dereliction of duty,” Dr. Craig said. “He in effect leaves it up to others to determine who our public officials will be. There is too much at stake in our national elections to abdicate our responsibility to help choose our leaders.”

Also, Dr. Craig in answering the Question of the Week, took a clear stand that policy matters in helping determine how we should vote.

“I am definitely advocating that we prioritize policy over character,” Dr. Craig said. “American evangelicals really came of age politically, I think, during the Carter Presidency. So many of us were excited that a man who was an outspoken, born-again Christian would be at the helm, guiding our nation. We felt that we could pray confidently for him, knowing that he was tuned in with God. But for many evangelicals President Carter turned out to be a deep disappointment because of the policies he pursued. What we came to see is that character without right policy is just as empty as faith without works.”

Dr. Craig urged Christians to make a difference with their vote for biblical values.

“So in the upcoming election, I’d encourage Christians to prioritize policy over character and to vote for those candidates who have the best chance of promoting biblical values in the public square,” Dr. Craig said.

You can read all of Dr. Craig’s comments on the Christian & the 2020 election at the Reasonable Faith website.

Previously, we’ve advanced these same arguments. Specifically, a candidate’s personal sinfulness matters; however, it matters less than sinful public policy.

Also, we’ve argued that the Christian when trying to decide for whom to vote should apply Dr. Norman Geisler’s Graded Absolutism. This is the key component in our model for how Christians should vote—namely, by voting for the greater commandments over lesser ones, the Christian is fulfilling his moral duties required by God in this fallen, sinful world.  

6 thoughts on “Christian Philosopher: Voting Third Party is ‘Dereliction of Duty’”

  1. No, he’s wrong. When you “choose someone who might not win” then you are leaving the winner up to God. We don’t have the responsibility to vote for the winner, we have the responsibility to participate, i.e. to vote.

    A good example would be if there were two main-party candidates and neither was pro-life, then I would vote for a pro-life third party if I had the choice or I would abstain if I didn’t. There are some state level elections that I’ll be doing that on. They have to meet some minimum qualifications to get my vote. God will choose which evil man wins and we’ll live with the choices he makes.

    Of course, I’m glad we have Trump running so I can vote for him and know it’s the right thing.

    1. He is definitely wrong. When the dems and GrumpyOldPerverts are both evil then you must vote Tea Party or Constitution or some other third party to send them the message that they are wrong. And when the third party gets enough votes they will win.

      Unfortunately the GOP chased off true conservatives and when we did not vote for them nor the even worse dem candidate the dems won. But did the GOP change? No they double down on stupid until Trump showed them how an outsider who we supported could run the field and beat every RINO and neocon to get the nomination. And then WE elected Trump president.

      I realize that some people worship life and not God. And they reject the clear statements in the bible that a fetus is not a person merely property. Jewish law says a fetus is not a person until is has been past tense born. Who knows more about the OT than the Jews?

    2. I’m not sure why you say “we have the responsibility to participate, i.e., to vote.” On what basis do you make such a claim? What if we deem no one worthy of a vote? How is voting for “nobody” any different than voting for “Donald Trump” or “Joseph Biden”?

  2. There is a new book titled “Calling Bullshit: The art of skepticism in a data driven world” by West And Bernstrom, which explains the errors and devious ways that people try to push erroneous ideas on the world. Sometimes intentionally and sometimes because they are stupid and uneducated.

    I am said to say that Craig’s article is exactly the sort of bullshit that the book warns people to be skeptical of and avoid believing.

    I will apply Hanlon’s razor to Craig’s reason for writing such an erroneous article, even though Calling Bullshit failed to name that reason when it discussed the happenings caused which it applies to.

  3. Pingback: Book Review: David Platt's 'Before you Vote' Gets an 'F' From Biblical Discerners - Protestia

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